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Meet Your Expansion Draft Addiction

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The possibilities are endless!

Dallas Stars v St Louis Blues - Game Four Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

With the Dallas Stars loss to the Ottawa Senators last night on home ice, the odds of them making the playoffs are 0.5% today. They’re basically four losses away from being eliminated mathematically altogether. Sports Club Stats says the team would have to go 12-1-2 down the stretch to have more than a 50/50 shot at making the playoffs. A schedule that is very road heavy, where the Stars have struggled to win this season.

That kind of run feels awfully out of reach today.

Most of us have already started playing with the NHL draft lottery tool to see how often they can get the Stars to win a top three draft pick. (Our staff ran some simulations last night and got a 30% chance of top three and 10% chance of the top pick for what it’s worth.)

There will be plenty of debates about who the Stars could draft and where they might be drafting. We’ll still do our draft profile analysis from our prospect experts, as usual. But now we have an even more exciting offseason coming, with an expansion draft occurring with the Las Vegas Golden Knights this summer just a few weeks prior to

CapFriendly has just what you need to understand — and play around with — the expansion draft rules: an expansion draft tool.

They’ve painstakingly gone through each team’s roster and easily coded which players meet the expansion draft exposure requirements such as those that have played in 40 games this season or 70 games total in the past two years as well as each player’s contract status.

CapFriendly has it setup so that you can do your own expansion drafts in one of two ways: “Quick Draft” automatically goes through each team and applies protections to meet the protection guidelines or you can go through and decide protections for each team individually. They’ve programmed it to not allow you to protect more than the 7F/3D or 8 skater limits.

Happy expansion drafting!

Another way in which this helps the fanbases of teams is it allows them to look at the status of each team in the league and determine who might need to make a trade prior to the expansion draft in order to protect an asset. In other words, we can troll for goaltender trade candidates easily and determine whether a team could be a potential trade partner.

For example, the Boston Bruins can protect only one goaltender. If you were Boston, would you protect Tukka Rask or the younger promise of Malcolm Subban? Which of those two are more likely to be taken by Las Vegas if left unprotected? Luckily, you can have that same debate for each team to see the pool of potential available goaltenders.

It’s every expansion draft nerds dream.

With the league reportedly not going to make expansion draft protection lists available to the public, it will cause a lot more speculation among fans until the expansion draft picks are actually known.

It gives us plenty of things to talk about and debate as the Stanley Cup playoffs occur — when the Dallas Stars are hitting the golf course early this year. Thank goodness there will be plenty of opportunities for the Stars to be improved this offseason.